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Squat form check, please! Can't get a straight bar path.

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  • Squat form check, please! Can't get a straight bar path.

    Hi everyone,

    I felt that my first work set today was just horrible, particularly in terms of keeping a straight bar path. I only increased the weight by +10 lbs to 175 lbs (this is where I am now). This isn't a lot, and even then I was struggling to push the weight up.

    In my third rep of Set 1, you can see how I kind of leaned forward too much for reasons I can't figure out. I tried to move the bar in a straight line to the best of my ability in the second and third sets. My warm-up sets (at 165 lbs) were much better in terms of speed and bar path.

    Details: I am a beginner; started lifting weights since Aug 1, 2020. I do have some sharp pain in the outer calf of my right leg from a doing lunges last week (I also had it in my left but it fully recovered). I feel this pain at the very bottom of the squat; it feels like my calf muscle is compressing or pushing really hard against my outer shin bone (= fibula). This could have been a reason for the bad form, not sure.

    I don't know, the bar keeps moving in all directions, no matter how hard I try to brace and keep my core tight for the support. Usually, I notice that on 2-3 of my reps on every 5-rep-set, the barbell ends up over my toes instead of the mid-foot at the bottom of the squat. How do I correct this?

    1) Set 1 (5 reps of 175 lbs) - worst set of all 3 sets!

    2) Set 2 (5 reps of 175 lbs)

    Last edited by All Pain No Gain; 09-18-2020, 04:32 AM.

  • #2
    What happens if you do your descent slowly? Something like 2-3 seconds on the descent (drop the weight a bit to try it). I say that because while your descent isn't necessarily too fast on an absolute scale, it does take more practice to do a fast descent while under control.


    • #3
      (I'm not an expert) You might try weightlifting shoes or just flat shoes (i.e. chucks) . You look like you might be rising up / moving your weight a bit to your toes. The running-type shoes you're wearing look like they may have spongy padding on the bottom - good if you want to absorb shock, not so good if you're trying to keep a stable squat stance.

      You watch the bar path - look at your feet too. When the bar moves it seems to be as your heel leaves the floor.


      • #4
        Weightlifting shoes..Weightlifting shoes..Weightlifting shoes...Get them. They're worth it to stay stable.

        Practice and more practice. And practice some more. Watch your video's and clean up one small detail at a time (but don't obsess). Don't worry about weight on the bar. Follow your RPE and include the quality of the rep (good form) as a metric in your RPE. It takes time to become a proficient (read smooth) squatter.

        In your mind visualize a vertical bar path. In time, as you get more experience under the bar, things will clean up.

        Try 3-0-3 tempo squats as well. On your video's you are actually pause squatting.


        • #5
          remember to push through the middle of your feet, it will help you prevent the bar from moving around. also it seems like you're falling ever so forward on the descent I would suggest as others have to get a pair of weightlifting shoes, or at least wear a pair of chucks. the shoes you got on seem to be way too cushiony and as a result prevent you from finding your balance.